Monday, March 14, 2011

Movie of the Week - Star Wars

This week’s movie is Star Wars (1977).

The space opera is about The Empire, a tyrannical military force, whose sole objective is to gain control and have power over the universe. However, there are still some Rebels that fight against them. When one of the leading Rebels is captured by Darth Vader (a top Empire commander), she sends a desperate message to Obi-Wan Kanobi, a former Jedi Knight, asking for his help to get plans on how to strike a decisive blow to The Empire to the Rebel base. But, the message falls into the hands of Luke Skywalker, a farmer who longs for more. The film is written and directed by George Lucas (and to date is the best film that he has directed). Lucas has a fantastic cast and crew on the film with music by John Williams, cinematography from Gilbert Taylor and production design from John Barry (making it an all-star line-up). Williams’ score is wonderful (though it gets even better with the two subsequent films), but it is Barry’s sets that steal the show (he also designed Superman and A Clockwork Orange, before he died young). The cast is highlighted by Alec Guinness and features Mark Hamill (though maybe his best work is as the voice of the Joker), Carrie Fisher and great voice work from Anthony Daniels and James Earl Jones. However, it is Harrison Ford’s Han Solo that elevates this film. His rough, fringe planet smuggler Captain Solo is utterly charismatic and a pleasure to watch (not to mention influencing Firefly’s Captain Reynolds). What makes this film great is its scale, sets, characters and story. This is the film that would forever change the landscape of Hollywood filmmaking, and many of our favorite films exist thanks to this one. It is a must see (though I suspect most have already seen it, if not multiple times). Check out the trailer.

Available on Blu-ray, DVD and to Rent

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